A Louisville man was shot and killed Wednesday night by a Blount County Sheriff's Office deputy and the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation is assisting BCSO in the investigation.
According to TBI Public Information Officer Kristin Helm, Henry C. Taylor, 68, of Clear Springs Way, Louisville, was shot by a BCSO deputy around 10 p.m. at 1856 Mentor Road, Louisville. The deputy was not injured in the shooting, which occurred at a house the Blount County Register of Deeds says is owned by Taylor and his wife, Cynthia Ann Houser Ridinger.
According to the Tennessee Department of State, Taylor is listed as the registered agent for RTR Properties Inc., which was incorporated in 1998. The principal address for the business was 1856 Mentor Road until April 2011, when state records indicate it was changed to 3348 Clear Springs Way.
In a release today, Blount County Sheriff James Lee Berrong said the Blount County deputy involved in the shooting is on paid administrative leave, per Sheriff’s Office policy, pending the outcome of TBI's investigation into the incident and BCSO's internal affairs investigation. Patrolman Ernest Ti Ragland, 22, has been employed by BCSO since December 2012.
Statements Deputy Ragland gave supervisors at the scene were that he was performing a property check at a rental property on Mentor Road at around 10 p.m. Wednesday. He said he was checking a garage on the property when he saw a broken window and went to investigate it, then shined his flashlight inside the building and saw a man with a handgun.
He told supervisors that he gave verbal commands, and fired multiple shots, striking Taylor and killing him.
Twice this week the Blount County Sheriff’s Office responded to the Taylor’s Mentor Road rental property to take burglary reports.
On Tuesday, a deputy took a report from Henry Taylor that several items had been taken from the property, including an HVAC unit. At around 7 p.m. Wednesday, Ragland responded to the rental property and took a report of another burglary of several additional items. Ragland informed Mrs. Taylor he would do property checks at the residence throughout the night, and at around 10 p.m. he returned to conduct the property check and encountered Mr. Taylor in the garage.
"This is a very tragic incident,” Berrong said. “Deputy Ragland was performing the promised property checks on the residence, and both individuals reacted. We are all deeply saddened by the chain of events that took place last night. ”
Earlier Wednesday evening, deputies were called to the residence on a theft complaint and promised frequent patrols of the area. Later in the evening, Helm said, one deputy was checking the residence and encountered an individual inside a garage on the property. Events leading up to the shooting are currently under investigation.
Authorities said Wednesday night that when deputies responded to the Mentor Road residence to perform a property check, they were subsequently fired upon, authorities said. A portion of the Mentor Road was closed following the report of gunfire.
The Alcoa Police Department as well as members of the Blount County Sheriff’s Office SWAT (Special Weapons and Tactics) team were on the scene Wednesday night.
Several neighbors, who were not identified, said they heard what sounded like gunshots, but could not provide any other information.
The 5th Judicial District Attorney General requested TBI assist in the investigation. The TBI will complete the investigation and turn it over to the District Attorney for review. TBI does not release the names of officers involved in shootings.
Two TBI agents, along with TBI's Violent Crime Response Team from the Knoxville crime lab are currently investigating the incident with the Blount County Sheriff's Office.
The residence is a rental property that has been the scene of several recent thefts and break-ins, Helm said.
Taylor's body will be taken to University of Tennessee Forensic for autopsy, Helm said.
Taylor was a graduate of Carter High School in Knoxville and a retired Air Force veteran, having served 20 years. He also retired as a captain with the Tennessee State Guard and worked as a mail handler for the U.S. Postal Service for 22 years. Taylor was also an amateur radio operator.
The family plans a private graveside service and Miller Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.